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MOZART: Cosi fan tutte (Schwarzkopf, Otto, Karajan) (1954) (Elisabeth Schwarzkopf/ Herbert von Karajan/ John Pritchard/ Leopold Simoneau/ Lisa Otto/ Mark Obert-Thorn/ Nan Merriman/ Philharmonia Chorus/ Philharmonia Orchestra/ Rolando Panerai/ Sesto Brusca


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Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791)
Cos?â?¼ fan tutte
ossia La scuola degli amanti Opera in two acts
Libretto: Lorenzo da Ponte Fiordiligi - Elisabeth Schwarzkopf (soprano)
Dorabella - Nan Merriman (mezzo-soprano)
Despina - Lisa Otto (soprano)
Ferrando - Leopold Simoneau (tenor)
Guglielmo - Rolando Panerai (baritone)
Don Alfonso - Sesto Bruscantini (baritone) Philharmonia Chorus and Orchestra
Herbert von Karajan Recorded 13 July 1954 in Kingsway Hall, London;
14-16 and 19-21 July and 6 November 1954 in EMI Abbey Road Studio No. 1, London;
and 14, 17 and 19 July 1954 in EMI Abbey Road Studio No. 3, London First issued as Columbia 33CX 1262 through 1264     Cos?â?¼ fan tutte was the last of the three operas on which Mozart collaborated with the librettist Lorenzo da Ponte (1749-1838). Very little is known regarding the creation of the work other than that its commission is thought to have occurred following a successful revival of twelve performances of Le nozze di Figaro between August and September 1789. The composer and librettist worked on the new opera between September and December the same year with the premi?â?¿re taking place on 26 January 1790 at the Burgtheater in Vienna, three days before Mozart's 34th birthday. Unfortunately the death of the Emperor Joseph II the following month interrupted the series of performances but a second run took place between June and August of that year. Following Mozart's death in December 1791 the opera soon disappeared from the repertory. True, there was an English premi?â?¿re in London in May 1811, but the work was not revived in its original form. The first American performance did not occur until March 1922. The reasons for the work's disappearance were numerous. The work was deemed frivolous and immoral, quite unworthy and wholly unrepresentative of Mozart's genius. Thus, attempts were made in the nineteenth century to 'improve' da Ponte's libretto and Mozart's score was 'arranged' by various nonentities. Public morality during the nineteenth century was blinkered, intolerant, humourless and straight-laced. Little wonder that that da Ponte's description of Cos?â?¼ fan tute as a "school for lovers" and Mozart's "thus do all women" appalled the public. It also revealed the lack of awareness in the public perception that the story of a lover approaching a wife or lover in disguise to test her fidelity went back to mythical times. Happily, a more enlightened attitude over the past hundred years now accepts that Mozart and da Ponte's opera revealed the hidden psychological truth through Mozart's genius. The characters in the opera are Fiordiligi, a lady from Ferrara, living in Naples, Dorabella, her sister, also living in Naples, and Despina, their chambermaid. On the male side are Gugliemo, an officer, in love with Fiordiligi, Ferrando, also an officer, in love with Dorabella, and Don Alfonso, an old philosopher, together with the chorus who portray soldiers, servants, sailors, townspeople and wedding guests. It is the cynical Don Alfonso who challenges the male lovers, suggesting that the respective sweethearts will fall for the advances of other men. The wager is accepted, and they lose, but everything turns out happily for all concerned by the very end. Mozart was thoroughly familiar with the capabilities of the singers who sang in the premi?â?¿re and wrote the various parts with their voices in mind. The composer had earlier written five concert arias for the two women and the tenor and baritone had sung in the first Vienna performance of Don Giovanni. The year 1954 was a particularly busy one for Elisabeth Schwarzkopf in the studio. She began with seven days in January on a mixed Lieder recital with Gerald Moore, with nine more on an unpublished selection from Wolf's Italienisches Liederbuch, also with Moore, made in the unusual venue of the Wigmore Hall in London during April, June, July and September. She also took part in complete recordings of Johann Strauss's Der Zigeunerbaron, Wiener Blut and Eine Nacht in Venedig, with Richard Strauss's Ariadne auf Naxos and highlights from Arabella, Verdi's Messa da Requiem, Leonore's "Abscheulicher" aria from Fidelio and the concert aria 'Ah! perfido', both by Beethoven, in addition to Cos?â?¼ fan tutte. The appendix here consists of various other Mozart arias Schwarzkopf recorded in the summer of 1952 that eventually appeared on LP as a Mozart recital. She never sang the r?â??les of Ilia or Donna Anna on stage. The examples show the change in quality that occurred in Schwarzkopf's vocal colour in the early 1950s. The first 'complete' recording of Cos?â?¼ fan tutte was made in the summer of 1935 with members of the Glyndebourne Festival production of that year. The admirable performance conducted by Fritz Busch, is available on Naxos (8.110280-81). Two other attempts in early 1952 failed to do justice to the score, so with the impending two hundredth anniversary of Mozart's birth, the field was clear for a carefully prepared Italian-sung version. The recording impresario and producer Walter Legge (1906-1979) put together such a recording to be made in July 1954. It was recorded in three different venues, the secco recitatives being undertaken in EMI's small and intimate No. 3 Studio at Abbey Road. At the time neither Schwarzkopf nor Rolando Panerai had yet sung their r?â??les on stage. The soprano many years later recalled her unbounded admiration for the contribution of the Canadian tenor Leopold Simoneau. "It was incredible singing, of tonal beauty, of expression in everything, really of the utmost elegance and knowledge" (Elisabeth Schwarzkopf: Her career on record: Duckworth, 1995) When the finished result was first released in Britain in September 1955, The Gramophone reviewer felt "the casting is ideal". He also commented that "Schwarzkopf is in splendid voice as the sentimental Fiordiligi, Merriman equally good as the practical Dorabella, and Otto is a good Despina and very amusing in her assumed voices". On the male side Bruscantini's Don Alfonso offered "a subtle and convincing characterisation, Simoneau surpasses himself in lovely tone and phrasing, and Panerai subdues his powerful voice to the needs of the occasion". The orchestral playing of the Philharmonia Orchestra under Karajan was deemed to be "of the finest quality" and the engineers "are to be congratulated on the admirable balance" between voices and orchestra. Fifty years later this recording continues to exemplify all the best qualities of Mozart singing at that time. Incidentally, the recording omits No. 7 (the Duettino "Al fato dan legge quegli occhi" with Ferrando and Guglielmo) and No. 24 (Ferrando's aria "Ah lo veggio quell'anima bella") and their preceding recitatives. Some other recitatives have also been shortened The Austrian-born conductor Herbert von Karajan (1908-1989) studied first in Salzburg and then in Vienna under Franz Schalk. He made his debut in Ulm in 1929 and remained there for five years, moving to Aachen between 1935 and 1937. A much-praised Berlin debut conducting Tristan und Isolde led to his international career. Banned from conducting in public from 1945 to 1947, he made his first London appearance in 1948 and became a regular visitor for the next decade with further appearances with the Philharmonia Orchestra. Karajan was appointed conductor of the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra in 1955 and continued until his death. He also appeared during the same period both in Vienna and at the Salzburg Festival in July and A
Facts
Item number 8111232-34
Barcode 747313323227
Release date 03/07/2006
Category Opera / Operetta | Classical Music
Label Naxos Records | Naxos Historical
Media type CD
Number of units 3
Performers
Artists Elisabeth Schwarzkopf
Leopold Simoneau
Nan Merriman
Lisa Otto
Rolando Panerai
Sesto Bruscantini
Composers Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Conductors Herbert von Karajan
John Pritchard
Orchestras Philharmonia Chorus
Philharmonia Orchestra
Producers Mark Obert-Thorn
Disc: 1
Cosi fan tutte, K. 588
1 Overture
2 Act I Scene 1: La mia Dorabella capace non e (Ferr
3 Act I Scene 1: Cessate di scherzar (Ferrando, Don
4 Act I Scene 1: E la fede delle femmine (Don Alfons
5 Act I Scene 1: Scioccherie di poeti! (Don Alfonso,
6 Act I Scene 1: Una bella serenata (Ferrando, Gugli
7 Act I Scene 2: Ah guarda, sorella (Fiordiligi, Dor
8 Act I Scene 2: Mi par, che stamattina (Fiordiligi,
9 Act I Scene 2: Barbaro fato! Vorrei dir, e cor non
10 Act I Scene 2: Stelle! Per carita, Signor Alfonso
11 Act I Scene 2: Sento, o Dio, che questo piede (Gug
12 Act I Scene 2: O cielo, questo e il tamburo funest
13 Act I Scene 2: Bella vita militar! (Chorus)
14 Act I Scene 2: Non v'e piu tempo, amici (Don Alfon
15 Act I Scene 2: Muoio d'affanno! (Fiordiligi, Dorab
16 Act I Scene 2: Oh Dei, come veloce se ne va quella
17 Act I Scene 2: Soave sia il vento (Fiordiligi, Dor
18 Act I Scene 2: Quante smorfie… quante buffonerie!
19 Act I Scene 3: Che vita maledetta (Despina, Fiordi
20 Act I Scene 3: Ah, scostati!… Smanie implacabili c
21 Act I Scene 3: Signora Dorabella, Signora Fiordili
22 Act I Scene 3: In uomini, in soldati sperare fedel
23 Act I Scene 3: Despinetta! … Che batte? (Don Alfon
24 Act I Scene 3: Alla bella Despinetta (Don Alfonso,
25 Act I Scene 3: Oh ciel! Mirate (Dorabella, Don Alf
26 Act I Scene 3: Come scoglio immoto resta (Fiordili
27 Act I Scene 3: Ah, non partite! (Ferrando, Gugliel
28 Act I Scene 3: Non siate ritrosi (Guglielmo)
29 Act I Scene 3: E voi ridete? (Don Alfonso, Ferrand
30 Act I Scene 3: E avete ancora coraggio di fiatar?
31 Act I Scene 3: Un'aura amorosa del nostro tesoro (
32 Act I Scene 3: E come credi che l'affar finira? (D
Disc: 2
Cosi fan tutte, K. 588
1 Act I Scene 4: Ah, che tutto in un momento (Fiordi
2 Act I Scene 4: Si mora, si, si mora (Ferrando, Gug
3 Act I Scene 4: Eccovi il medico, Signore belle (Do
4 Act I Scene 4: Dove son? Che loco e questo? (Ferra
5 Act I Scene 4: Dammi un bacio, o mio tesoro (Ferra
6 Act II Scene 1: Andate la, che siete due bizarre r
7 Act II Scene 1: Una donna a quindici anni (Despina
8 Act II Scene 1: Sorella, cosa dici? (Fiordiligi, D
9 Act II Scene 1: Prendero quel brunettino (Dorabell
10 Act II Scene 2: Secondate, aurette amiche (Ferrand
11 Act II Scene 2: Cos'e tal mascherata? (Fiordiligi,
12 Act II Scene 2: La mano a me date (Don Alfonso, Fe
13 Act II Scene 2: Oh, che bella giornata! (Fiordilig
14 Act II Scene 2: Il core vi dono (Guglielmo, Dorabe
15 Act II Scene 2: Ei parte...senti...ah no! (Fiordil
16 Act II Scene 2: Per pieta, ben mio, perdona (Fiord
17 Act II Scene 2: Amico, abbiamo vinto! (Ferrando, G
18 Act II Scene 2: Donne mie, la fate a tanti a tanti
19 Act II Scene 2: In qual fiero contrasto (Ferrando)
20 Act II Scene 2: Tradito, schernito (Ferrando)
21 Act II Scene 2: Bravo, questa e costanza (Don Alfo
22 Act II Scene 3: Ora vedo che siete una donna di ga
23 Act II Scene 3: E amore un ladroncello (Dorabella)
24 Act II Scene 3: Come tutto congiura a sedurre il m
25 Act II Scene 3: Fra gli amplessi in pochi istanti
26 Act II Scene 3: Ah, poveretto me (Gugliemo, Don Al
27 Act II Scene 3: Tutti accusan le donne (Don Alfons
28 Act II Scene 3: Vittoria, padroncini! (Despina, Fe
Disc: 3
Cosi fan tutte, K. 588
1 Act II Scene 4: Fate presto, o cari amici (Despina
2 Act II Scene 4: Benedetti i doppi coniugi (Chorus,
3 Act II Scene 4: E nel tuo, nel mio bicchiero (Fior
4 Act II Scene 4: Miei Signori, tutto e fatto (Don A
5 Act II Scene 4: Bella vita militar (Chorus, Fiordi
6 Act II Scene 4: Sani e salvi agli amplessi amorosi
7 Act II Scene 4: No Signor, non e un notaio (Despin
8 Act II Scene 4: Ah, Signor, son rea di morte (Fior
9 Act II Scene 4: A voi s'inchina bella damina (Ferr
10 Act II Scene 4: Fortunato l'uom che prende (All)
Idomeneo, K. 366, Act III: Zeffiretti lusinghieri
11 Idomeneo, K. 366, Act III: Zeffiretti lusinghieri
Le nozze di Figaro, K. 492 (excerpts)
12 Act I: Non so piu cosa son (Cherubino)
13 Act II: Porgi, amor (The Countess)
14 Act II: Voi che sapete (Cherubino)
15 Act III: Dove sono i bei momenti (The Countess)
16 Act IV: Giunse alfin il momento… Deh, vieni, non t
Don Giovanni, K. 527 (excerpts)
17 Act I: Batti, batti o bel Masetto (Zerlina)
18 Act II: Vedrai, carino (Zerlina)
19 Act II: Crudele? … Non mi dir (Donna Anna)
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If you like MOZART: Cosi fan tutte (Schwarzkopf, Otto, Karajan) (1954) (Elisabeth Schwarzkopf/ Herbert von Karajan/ John Pritchard/ Leopold Simoneau/ Lisa Otto/ Mark Obert-Thorn/ Nan Merriman/ Philharmonia Chorus/ Philharmonia Orchestra/ Rolando Panerai/ Sesto Brusca, please tell your friends! You can easily share this page directly on Facebook, Twitter and via e-mail below.

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